Nov 212009

Hi all,

I wanted to say that I finished the new book about a month ago, it went to my agent on the 29th of October, and it will start making the rounds of publishers after Thanksgiving. I have no idea where it’s going to wind up, so we’ll see.

The title is The Five, which is also the name of the band. The image is one I put together just for fun to send out with the manuscript. I enjoy playing with graphics and fonts, so I thought I’d do this “mock cover”. By no means am I a graphics professional, but I decided I’d do it anyway after I finished writing the book.

The manuscript came out to 523 pages, a little longer than I’d anticipated but they always seem to come out longer than I think they will.

The last two weeks of writing were really tough, as I had to finish before I went to the writers’ conference in Vancouver. I’d made plans back last March or so to go to Vancouver, and I realized in September that I was going to crash into the conference date and not be finished unless I picked up the pace. I could’ve gone without finishing, but (at least for me) when I’m so close to the end of a project my sleeping schedule goes crazy and I can’t do anything without having the book foremost in my mind, so I would’ve been bumping into walls in Vancouver and not been much good for anything.

Any writing project to me is like a slow-motion marathon. It’s going to be nine months, and you have to be careful not to “kick” too early or you’ll burn out before you finish. I kicked early on this one, and I was running full-out trying to finish and so the world went away from me for awhile and, likewise, I went away from the world.

But now, happily, The Five is done, I’m very excited and pleased with it and in a way it represents a new beginning (again!!) for me. A new agent, a new publisher, and (we hope) a new opportunity. As I mentioned in another post, The Five is a contemporary novel, which I’ve not done for awhile.

I’m going to give myself a few months to recuperate and then I’ll start on the next Matthew book. As I’ve also said, I’m planning on going back and forth in the next few years between doing the Corbett series and writing more contemporary books.

I’m very pleased about the quality of my writing in The Five. I think it’s way beyond what I’ve done before, and I have to credit Matthew Corbett for that. I believe that writing the historical series—and being somewhat constricted in language, yet having to be as painstaking and imaginative with language as you’re able to be—has helped my abilities. I have great fun with the language in the Corbett series, and I found in writing The Five that I didn’t have to “think” quite so hard to find the right way to say or describe something. It just seemed to flow much more smoothly, and I do credit Matthew for that.

So…Mister Slaughter comes out in January, The Five will be after that (who knows when, but I hope it won’t be too long) and I’m planning on finishing the new Matthew book, The Providence Rider, next autumn. Actually, probably around October. And also probably very near the time I told the good folks up in Vancouver I’d come to the conference again!

Well, the wheels of the bus do go round and round.

Thanks again for your interest in my work, and thank you for the time you spend in checking on the website and keeping up with my writing. I’ll let you know later on as things progress.

Best Wishes,
Robert McCammon


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